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Update: Rescued!! “The mewing was heartbreaking”

by Prince Of Petworth May 27, 2016 at 9:43 am 50 Comments


Update from WARL:

“With the help of @wmata, our Animal Control Officers saved 6-week-old Totten of rail tracks #wmata”

Photo by PoPville flickr user Matt Calvert

“Dear PoPville,

I’m writing in the hopes that someone knows the (hopefully happy?) end to this story.

I was at Fort Totten this morning to catch the yellow line to the airport when several of us heard plaintive mews of distress from a little, fuzzy kitten hiding behind the third rail. Several folks tried in the stretches between trains to coax the kitten within reach to no avail. Someone notified the station manager and was apparently told there was nothing he could do because it was rush hour. Another metro employee came by soon after and was more sympathetic (I wish I had gotten a name or number). He was on the radio quickly and the next trains crawled through at a snails pace to give the kitten time to get out of the way. After one train passed, I saw the top of another cat’s ears poke up between the grates directly behind the third rail. I couldn’t see well enough to know whether or was another kitten or a mother cat, but I assume it was a kitten because my guess is the mother would have responded to the other kitten’s cries.

I had to leave to catch my plane, but I’m hoping someone knows if they were able to rescue the kittens! The mewing was heartbreaking.”

  • textdoc

    Poor kitten(s). :(

  • ke

    I just called the Animal Control emergency line and they said they are at the location. For future reference: 202-576-6664..

    • C_petworth

      oh good to hear! So sad.

    • Op

      THANK YOU! I have read that tip before on this site but it didn’t occur to me in the moment. I’m so glad to hear help arrived!!!!

    • textdoc

      Good thinking, and thanks for posting the number.

    • Victoria

      Thank you for updating us! I’ve been worried since I heard about this earlier. Hopefully Animal Control was able to get them to safety.

    • Tall E

      thanks for making sure they knew about it and sharing the number!

    • K

      Thank you for posting that number. I am going to save it in my phone. It’s one of those things you don’t think of until you absolutely need it (like the poison control number).

      • Marty

        but fortunately, 800 222 1222 is pretty easy to remember

    • zipdc

      Just added that # to my contacts – thank you for posting!

  • anon

    In situations involving animals you MUST contact DC Animal Care & Control. It is not the responsibility of WMATA employees to help the cats (though I am grateful some wanted to do something to help), but rather animal control officers.

    DC AC&C is aware of the situation now, and I’m sure will be doing their best to help.

    • Marty

      is there a reason MWATA employees themselves couldn’t call that number? Seems like having them call is a better system than hoping random strangers know what to do.

      • textdoc

        WMATA employees ought to be the ones calling Animal Control… but WMATA employees not doing what they’re supposed to do isn’t exactly surprising.

      • anon

        Yeah, you’d think metro employees would have a list of numbers to call for various problems such as this.

        • textdoc

          That would require them taking some sort of initiative/action, which many of them seem to be loath to do.

  • vivian

    ‘someone notified the station manager and was apparently told there was nothing he could do because it was rush hour.’

    ^ so an innocent little life is stuck under the damn tracks and you cant do anything just because it is freaking rush hour?? bitch, please. NO. just no.

    ugh. jerk

    • wdc

      I love kittens. Love love love them. But yes, thousands of humans and the efficiency of multi-million dollar taxpayer funded transportation system DO take precedence over a couple of strays. There is no shortage of kittens. Let’s be sensible please.
      Remember the politicians falling all over themselves in NYC last year about how they would shut down the entire subway system to save a kitten if they had to? That’s just shameless pandering.

      • CHGal

        Yeah, I’d be pissed if I was late for work because they stopped the train for a stray cat.

        • Sydney

          I’m sure the same unwillingness to tie up rush hour will obtain, next time that phantom “sick passenger” can’t be off-loaded to wait on the platform.

          • wdc

            I don’t exactly follow (did you mean “prevail” instead of “obtain”?) but animals =/= humans.
            I would go so far as to say humans > animals.

          • anon

            wdc: your knowledge of grammar is indeed limited – the use of “obtain” by Sydney was correct. Look it up if you must. People who read literature tend to pick up on usages not used in common, simple, business-use English.

            I do agree with your other statements not this completely., wdc. And that doesn’t mean we don’t care about humans.

          • wdc

            Goodness, my limited grammar is failing me today! I can’t tell if you’re agreeing with me or not here: “I do agree with your other statements not this completely”

          • anon

            typo or autocorrect fail – I agree with your statements ON this completely.

          • Sydney

            Actually, it’s a question of diction, not grammar. [I know. Grr.] And yes, prevail is probably the better word choice.
            Speaking of nouns and verbs, the folks at the Shelter are the BEST at choosing irresistible names for their foundling dogs and cats. Totten! Thanks for the follow-up. Great photo.

    • soozles

      Sounds to me like the manager notified the other Metro folks and had the trains going slow through the area to give the kitten a chance to get out of the way.

  • Duponter

    God, the idea a Metro employee said there was nothing they can do should really be on a patch sewn on to all of their uniforms. WMATA: THERE’S NOTHING WE CAN DO.

    • Timmy

      Ha. This reminds me of Air Canada’s motto (according to my friend): We’re not satisfied until you’re not satisfied.

      • TX2DC

        I fly Air Canada regularly and totally agree with your friend!

    • D-C-0-9


      Remember that scene where Little Ralphie imagines his teacher gives him an A+ for his essay about the Red Ryder B.B. gun? This response deserves the same treatment: +1 +1 +1 +1 +1 +1 +1 +1…

    • Anon

      Hahahahaha amazing

    • d

      Yeah, Air Canada is among the worst airlines in the world.

      • anon

        well, then, I guess we can at least rest assure that Air Canada is not satisfied.

      • Anon

        Not by a long shot.

    • Northzax

      Future PopVille thread: I was delayed two hours today because of an ‘issue’ at ft. Totten. Why can’t WMATA fix the system?

  • istreettoistreet

    Metro had probably already made you late. Why not stop to help a creature in need? And have we forgotten Arthur, the NY Subway kitten?!

    • FridayGirl

      What was OP supposed to do? S/he informed the station manager…. I don’t think there was anything else OP personally could have done that wouldn’t have endangered OP’s own life.

      • Anonamom

        This. The kitten was near the third rail, and OP stated that other were trying their best to coax the poor thing out. I would never in a million years expect someone to risk their life by jumping on an in-use rail track and reaching near the electrified third rail to retrieve a cat.

  • HMS

    “Totten” saved! See: https://twitter.com/AndrewGiambrone/status/736246541904707585
    Happy Holidays!

  • AntiAlias

    The kitten is safe! Here’s a tweet of him being rescued. WARL has named him “Totten”.


    • OP

      Yay! I know I saw a second cat, though, so hopefully they canvassed the area!

    • textdoc

      Excellent news to begin the Memorial Day weekend with!

      • LittleBluePenguin

        Agreed! very happy to hear this!

  • victoria

    Well done Animal Control! And since dramatic rescues of adorable kittens always bring out lots of offers to adopt the kitten – please don’t forget that there are dozens of kittens looking for homes right now. I’ve got 4 of them (with equally dramatic rescue stories!)


  • Hill Denizen

    YAAAAAAAAY!!!! I’ve kept checking back hoping for a good resolution. And Totten is the perfect name. Little guy (girl?) looks like quite the trouble maker. What a cutie!!!!

  • Emmaleigh504

    Good news!

  • wpk_dc

    Yay! Kudos to the kitties’ saviors!!


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